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Last Updated: Tuesday, 9 March, 2004, 07:52 GMT
PlayStation 'wins next gen wars'
PlayStation 2
Sony has sold more than 70 million PS2s
The war for supremacy between the next generation of game consoles is over and Sony has won, say analysts.

The Informa Media Group predicts that Sony will sell more than 30 million PlayStation 3s in Europe by 2010.

It puts Microsoft in second place with 10 million sales and Nintendo trailing in third with five million.

The new consoles, expected by 2005, will have much more processing power than current models and emphasise online gaming.

Online arena

The console market is big business, with Sony alone having sold more than 70 million PlayStation 2.

The Japanese electronics giant, together with rivals Microsoft and Nintendo, are now looking to the next generation of games machine.

2005: 1.3 million
2006: 11m
2007: 22.1m
2008: 33.6m
2009: 41.9m
2010: 47.2m
Source: Informa Media Group
"Sony is set to exploit the lead it established with the PS2, but will face a much stronger challenge from Microsoft, who is determined not to be left chasing Sony next time," said Toby Scott, author of the Informa Media report, European Games Consoles to 2010.

"Meanwhile, Nintendo seems set to play to its strengths and emphasise game quality and innovation over processor horsepower."

However, it seems that Sony will prevail as the dominant machine, as it has done with the PS2.

According to the report, the PS3 is expected to sell 32 million units in Europe by 2010, more than the combined sales of the Microsoft and Nintendo machines.

But Sony can expect a fight on its hands from Microsoft, as they both aim to win over the hardcore gamer.

The battleground could well be the internet, with both future consoles emphasising online play.

Analysts see this as a big growth area for gaming. But there will also be innovations to widen the appeal of the consoles.

The next round of consoles are expected to come with voice recognition and motion detection technology, so that play can become a more social experience.

This will help attract more older people, women and first-time players to gaming, said Mr Scott.

Sony has already enjoyed some success with its EyeToy camera, which allows a player to control a game just by movement.

Informa does not write off the current generation of consoles. The report suggests they could be on sale until the end of the decade.

Game console sales start to slip
26 Nov 03  |  Technology
PlayStation fights falling sales
24 Jul 03  |  Technology
Next gen consoles spark concern
28 Aug 03  |  Technology
Game graphics hit their limits
30 Aug 03  |  Technology
Playstation 2 is 'console champion'
30 Oct 02  |  Technology

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